Author(s): Mark Haddon
"The real redemption in these superbly gripping stories comes from their canny human detail, and the vivid, unsettling clarity they bring to our lives." (Sunday Times). An expedition to Mars goes terribly wrong. A seaside pier collapses. A thirty-stone man is confined to his living room. One woman is abandoned on a tiny island in the middle of the ocean. Another woman is saved from drowning. Two boys discover a gun in a shoebox. A group of explorers find a cave of unimaginable size deep in the Amazon jungle. A man shoots a stranger in the chest on Christmas Eve. In this first collection of stories by the author of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Mark Haddon demonstrates two things: first that he is a master of the short form (several of the stories have been longlisted for prizes), second that his imagination is even darker than we had thought.
"He writes with the craft of Julian Barnes or, even, Truman Capote." -- Andrew Billen The Times "The real redemption in these superbly gripping stories comes from their canny human detail, and the vivid, unsettling clarity they bring to our brief lives." -- Phil Baker Sunday Times "Haddon achieves what newspapers often fail to do: he makes it real... The writing itself is beautiful... The stories are willed experiments, imagination's darkest what-ifs... Their execution is outstanding." -- Kate Kellaway Observer "A sustained set of powerfully told stories... It's as if Ian McEwan had never turned nice." -- David Sexton Evening Standard "Brilliant collection... Seamless prose... It feels as though Haddon is leading you into the deepest underworld of human endeavor and behavior, yet holding your hand gently as he guides you into the labyrinth. Outstanding." -- Imogen Lycett Green Daily Mail
Mark Haddon is an author, illustrator and screenwriter who has written fifteen books for children and won two BAFTAs. His bestselling novel, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time won seventeen literary prizes, including the Whitbread Award. His poetry collection, The Talking Horse and the Sad Girl and the Village Under the Sea, was published by Picador in 2005, and his last novel, The Red House, was published by Jonathan Cape in 2012. His most recent title is short story collection The Pier Falls. He lives in Oxford.